Thursday, July 22, 2010

Las Vegas: This place will be dead without cars

I finally made it to the Netroots Nation convention in Las Vegas -- even after some [clumsy person] knocked my glasses off my head and stepped on them on the plane, forcing me to stumble blindly through the Las Vegas airport. But some kind soul directed me to a hotel shuttle and, well, here I am -- in what has got to be the car capital of the world.

On The Strip they have bunches of 50-story hotels but the most amazing buildings I drove by on the shuttle were the ten-story parking garages. Ten stories high and two blocks long, they were hotels for cars. Cars only. Only cars!

Twenty years from now, when the world runs out of oil, won't people be SO embarrassed about having spent so much of their capital and infrastructure investments on cars. And wars. And other disposable consumer goods that nobody really needed.

Then I got to the Rio hotel, got my room on the 27th floor, admired the view of all those freeways, wandered down to the casino floor to watch hundreds of people gambling, regretted that I didn't have the $54 necessary to attend the Chippendale show (just kidding) and tried to register for the convention.

Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid will be speaking here on Saturday. And they will have a lot of explaining to do. Why are Republicans still setting the agenda for Congress? Why are we still spending all that money that we don't have on all those stupid "wars" on the Middle East? And why are we still bailing out Wall Street but not Main Street?

Also Alan Grayson will be speaking here on Saturday as well -- that is if he survives the death threats he's been getting after Fox News stirred up all the wingnuts against him this week because he spoke out in favor of bailing out the jobless instead of the oligarchs. Sigh.

The keynote speaker tonight will be Governor Brian Schweitzer of Montana. Plus I just scored a free ticket to the hotel's all-you-can-eat buffet.

Stay tuned.